The Westport Library is doing "30 days of library" in honor of their newly renovated space. July 2nd (tomorrow) is exploring the Writing Center at the library, so please join WestportWRITES and the Fairfield Scribes at 7 p.m. for readings from our brand-new anthology, Imagining Monsters: A Collection of Short Stories Inspired by Frankenstein. The reading is free, and all proceeds from book sales of Imagining Monsters benefit the Westport Library. Drinks and snacks will be served.
Authors who will be reading include Corrine "Mitzy Sky" Taylor, Elizabeth Chatsworth, V.P. Morris, Gabi Coatsworth, D.J. Whitney, Edward Ahern, Sheryl Kayne, and me!
So stop by, listen to some fantastic fiction by local writers, and have a chat with the writers afterwards while nibbling on some snacks. Hope to see you there!
I'll be at the Westport Library's Grand Re-Opening on Sunday afternoon (tomorrow) with the Fairfield Scribes as we lead two writing workshops in the brand-new library.
FROM 2PM-3PM in the Writing Center:
Join local poets Ann Cefola, Ralph Nazareth, Neddy Smith, Jerry Johnson, Edward Ahern, and me as we read our poetry and lead a short workshop on the process of writing and submitting poetry for publication, including an opportunity to write a poem of your own! We'll also do a "drive-by poeting" at the end of the session, where we will be happy to hand-write a personalized poem for volunteer participants to take home with you. Kids are very welcome to join in!
FROM 3PM-4PM in Brooks Place Seminar Room (next door to the Writing Center):
Join me with several of the editors and authors of local small press publisher Fairfield Scribes as we lead an interactive workshop on how to write, edit, and get published a flash fiction story (250 words and under). There will be an opportunity to roll up your sleeves and do some writing of your own, in addition to the opportunity to get your story professionally edited on the spot, and receive a list of suggestions on where to submit your work for publication.
There are also many fun and creative activities for all ages, from live performances to a hands-on maker's space, so check out the Library's events page HERE for a full listing. The Grand Re-Opening goes from 11am-4pm. Hope to see you there!
Those of you who know me will know that the only quiet time I usually have in the day is after my kids go to bed - from about 9 p.m. to 4 a.m. I actually had someone comment recently on the time I sent out an email, which was about 2:30 in the morning. And since I've been neglectful of posting updates on my website, I figure I'll remedy that... at 2 a.m.
There is a LOT of news to share, actually. I'll start out with the big one - the new anthology from the Fairfield Scribes, working in partnership with the WestportWRITES program of the Westport Library, has been published!!! It's called Imagining Monsters, and it's an anthology of fiction inspired by Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. This was a HUGE time crunch in order to get it done in time for the library's opening (this Sunday, June 23rd). But all the authors rallied and worked tirelessly at editing their stories, and together we ended up with a damned good book, if I do say so myself. The print book is currently on sale on Amazon HERE, with the eBook to follow shortly. I was lead editor on the project, and the anthology also carries my short "Herstory," which is a dystopian look at a future run by genociders who have killed half the population of the planet.
In addition to that huge project getting published, I've had a number of stories/poems published/accepted. I'll start out in order.
"Liquid" - Quail Bell Magazine
"Forgotten" (short story) - America's Emerging Literary Fiction Writers anthology
"On Algid Shores" (short story) - America's Emerging Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers anthology
"The First Snowfall" (short story) - America's Emerging Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers anthology
ACCEPTANCES (to be pubbed soon):
"The Princess Prevarication" - Ghosts on Drugs anthology
"Lost Under a Golden Song" (poem) - Polar Borealis Magazine
"Hate" (poem) - Elephants Never
"Starting Over" (poem) - Voice of Eve
"Sultry" (poem) - Voice of Eve
"Littoral" (poem) - Voice of Eve
Also, the lead story in my new collection of short stories, "Enchantress of Books" was recently excerpted at the magazine Bewildering Stories. You can read the full story HERE.
There's more news a-brewin' behind the scenes, so there might be another 2 a.m. update soon. Stay tuned!
To all the veterans out there, including the many veterans in our own family, wishing you the best on this Memorial Day - thank you for your service! Here are my girls at our local parade this morning.
I'll be doing a reading and writer chat with my fellow Fairfield Scribes authors Elizabeth Chatsworth and Gabi Coatsworth, and we'll be joined by local sci-fi author Roman Godzich. The event will take place from 7pm-8:30pm in the aptly-named Steampunk Library in The Storyteller's Cottage at 750 Hopmeadow Street in Simsbury, Connecticut.
From the Storyteller's Cottage website:
We're going to be reading an eclectic mix of speculative fiction - from steampunk to fantasy, from science fiction to magical realism. So there will be something to interest everyone who loves a good story!
Go HERE to register for the event - there's a $5 cover charge to attend. I hope to see you there.
I'm excited to say that several of my books and shorter works are eligible to be nominated for the Aurora Awards, one of the top Canadian speculative fiction awards. These are awards for Canadian speculative fiction authors and artists, voted on by Canadians. All you have to do to nominate works for the award is to join the Canadian Science Fiction & Fantasy Association (1-year membership is $10). Nominations close on May 18th, so there's a bit of time left to get your votes in before the final ballot is chosen.
Here are my works that are on the lists:
Best YA Novel Eligibility
- The Rose Queen, Alison McBain, Fairfield Scribes
Best Short Fiction Eligibility
- Red, Alison McBain, Tesseracts Twenty-One: Nevertheless, EDGE
Best Related Work Eligibility
- When to Now: A Time Travel Anthology, Alison McBain (Lead Editor), Fairfield Scribes
- Nevertheless (Tesseracts Twenty One), Rhonda Parrish and Greg Bechtel, EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing
And last, but not least, my dad is also eligible! Here is his work:
Best Fan Writing and Publication Eligibility
- Danger, Will Robinson!, John McBain, Bewildering Stories
And there are many, many more works by amazing Canadian authors and artists. I hope you get your nominations in!
Looking for some fun stuff to do this weekend? Come say hi! I'll be at two literary events this weekend on Saturday and Sunday.
First off is the Torrington Author Expo and Book Fair. It's on Saturday from 12-4pm and includes a great variety of local authors who will be there, including Rick Arruzza, Katie L. Carroll, Suzanne Cordatos, Rich Cyr, Shelby Davis, Terri Dixon, Charlene A. Donaghy, Olyvia Freeman, Sheryl Kayne, Tabitha G. Kelly, Christine Pakkala, Renée Pirie, Donna Marie Merritt, C.R. Quinn, Susan B. Roara, Jack Sheedy, Jamie Jackson Spannhake, and yours truly. My friend and fellow author/editor from the Fairfield Scribes, P.C. Keeler, will also be there. There will be raffles and giveaways, coffee and munchies, and a panel to help you "Just Write it Already!"
Then on Sunday, I'll be joining 3 other fab local poets at the Fairfield Public Library at 2pm for a poetry reading and a Q & A session about poetry writing and publishing.
The poets include me, Edward Ahern, Jeff Schwartz and Jack Powers. The event is free, and all are welcome to attend! You can find out more info about it on the library's website HERE.
So if you're looking for something to do inside to get out of the rainy weekend forecast for our area, I hope you'll be able to stop by at one of these great events and chat with me about writing, poetry, and publishing.
This spring has been a CRAZY one in terms of events, news, and pubs. I usually do 1-2 blog posts a month, but there has been a ton of stuff going on, so I want to make sure my updates are timely. Here's the latest news:
It's been a while since the acceptance, but my story "Afterlife" has been published at On Spec! I'm especially thrilled by this publication, since not only is On Spec a fabulous publication, but it's a double issue and my story is the first full-length one in the magazine. It's a ghost story and a love story, but neither part of these themes are what you'd call "traditional" in the story.
And, in keeping with April poetry month, I had two poems published in The Mark Literary Review: "Two-Cat Town" and "Lucky Number Seven." You can read them for free online HERE.
They keep rolling in! I am thrilled that my story "The Prototype" was picked up at Exoplanet Magazine, and should be published soon. And my flash fiction story "Liquid" will be published at Quail Bell Magazine, a really beautiful online and print magazine.
I had a very fun interview at Rachel Michelle's website Free the Writer, which is a great site featuring writing tips, news, and other writerly-themed posts.
I'm thrilled that the art for my book cover of science fiction short stories (coming out in 2020) has been finished! The creator is Richard Ong, the same fabulous artist who did the cover for my latest book release, Enchantress of Books and other stories. It's taken from a scene from my short story "The Prototype," which will be one of the stories featured in the collection. The title of the painting is "Skyward Bound," which I love so much that I'm making it the title of the book: SKYWARD BOUND: SF SHORTS. There will be more info about that later in the year, but for now, here's a sneak preview of Rich's amazing retro-SciFi-inspired artwork!
There is more news on the horizon, including local events in Connecticut where I'll be doing readings and workshops in the next couple months, plus more of my books coming out this summer and fall - so stay tuned!
And... my new fantasy book is out in print and eBook!!!
Enchantress of Books and other stories - over 200 pages and 19 great fantasy short stories to tide readers over until The Rose Queen sequel comes out later this year...
The eBook is free on Kindle Unlimited - hope you enjoy reading it!
Perhaps I should write on my blog more often - or perhaps this has just been an eventful month - but LOTS of stuff has been going on lately, and I'm so excited to share all of it.
First off, in celebration of poetry month, the wonderful folks of the Poets' Salon (including me!) will be doing a poetry workshop/reading this upcoming Saturday, April 13th, from 1:30pm to about 4pm at our local Fairfield Library. We'll read a bit of our poetry, have an open mic period, and also chat about what it takes to write and get your own poems published. We will have great snacks and drinks to keep you fueled, too - so be sure to drop in for a nosh and a rhyme. More info can be found HERE. Hope to see you there!
Next, I've had a slew of writing acceptances and publications recently. I had two drabbles (100-word stories) accepted for the Dark Drabbles # 1 Anthology, coming out June 25th. Speaking of coming out, my poem "lemures" was published at Plum Tree Tavern, and I also had my flash story "Ceasefire" published at The Ekphrastic Review. I actually read "Ceasefire" live down at KGB Bar in NYC this past Friday night. (Thanks to everyone who braved the nasty weather to come out and read/listen to our stories!)
My friend and fellow writer Barbara Russell interviewed me and reviewed my novel The Rose Queen on her website - you can find her fabulous post HERE. Another review came out today at Life of a Writer: Turn Another Page, and The Rose Queen got a glowing 4.5 out of 5 stars. I'm so thrilled that my book is getting such rave reviews!
Speaking about feedback on writerly projects, When to Now: A Time Travel Anthology is raking in the awards and nominations. The anthology overall won 1st place in the 2019 Connecticut Press Club Communications Contest in the editing category, and Gabi Coatsworth's story "Misconception" took first place in the same contest for the short story category. Leslie Burton-López's story "Baggage" made the Editors' Choice Fourth Quarterly Review at Bewildering Stories, and Elizabeth Chatsworth's story "Ten Minutes Past Teatime" is a finalist for the 2019 New England Readers' Choice Contest.
Whew! Some truly amazing stories and authors in the anthology and I am so happy that their stories are getting such good press. I hope everyone gives the anthology a read - you won't be disappointed, since there's something for every reader.
Speaking of awards, the anthology AFTERMATH: Explorations of Loss and Grief, containing my poem "Assimilation," is a 2019 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Award Finalist. Congrats to the amazing publishers, Lantz Arroyo, Nicholas Hurd, and Sarah Lopez, who are getting such wonderful recognition for their debut publishing project! They have a lot more exciting projects that have come out since then or are on the horizon, so be sure to check them out.
More exciting news coming soon!
Who the heck is Alison McBain?
I am a freelance writer and poet with nearly a hundred short pieces published in magazines and anthologies. If the Walking Dead isn't on, I draw pictures and do origami meditation in Connecticut, where I live with my family. If the Walking Dead is on... shhhh! The Walking Dead is on! For more info, please check out my "About Me" page.
© Alison McBain. All rights reserved